Internship Program

Explore a world of possibilities, discover new skills, and meet new people through a truly rewarding experience at one of the most innovative facilities for the education and treatment of children with special needs.

Institute Internships Explore the Human-Animal Bond and Nature-Based Programs

The Sam and Myra Ross Institute Internship offers a unique immersion experience for individuals interested in exploring the human-animal bond and nature-based activities to benefit children with special needs. This hands-on internship takes place in Green Chimneys’ enriched and supportive environment.

The Brewster Campus in Brewster NY serves over 220 children in residential care or day treatment where a professional treatment team of medical staff, social workers, teachers and childcare professionals are supported by experts in animal-assisted activities, horticulture education, outdoor education and nature-based vocational life skills training. The Farm & Wildlife Center is home to over 200 farm animals, horses, and permanently injured wildlife. Institute Interns also interact with children and families through public programs and special events open to all community members.

The Institute Internship Program is established in memory of Henry J. and Erna D. Leir.

What Our Interns Say

Program Schedule

The Institute Internship is a full-time, 4- or 8-month commitment. Interns work five days a week and also participate in occasional weekend activities and events. Exact dates vary depending on the Green Chimneys calendar.

Farm Animal, Equine, Wildlife, and Dog* program tracks

Vocational Farming at Boni-Bel

  • Spring/Summer: January – August (Interview in October)
  • Fall: September – December (Interview in June)

Vocational and Garden Education programs

  • Grow season: April – November (Interview in February)

Internationals stay from January to December (Interview in May)

*The internship focused on dog interaction requires an individual who works well independently while also collaborating with staff from multiple departments. Competency in working with children and dogs is required.

Phoenix & Sage the Bactrian Camels

Phoenix and Sage joined the Farm & Wildlife Center in May of 2012 as a gift from the Sacred Camel Gardens in California. They have become Goodwill Ambassadors of Green Chimneys and help us to model our philosophy of involving children with animals and showing others that we care about all living beings.

Born in 2010, Phoenix and Sage began their lives in the spiritual setting of Sacred Camel Gardens. Phoenix got his name because he was born the same day a large building burnt to the ground.